The FIA has confirmed that it is continuing to investigate the incident involving Sebastian Vettel and Lewis Hamilton at last weekend’s Azerbaijan GP “in order to evaluate whether any further action is necessary.”
It says that a meeting will be held on Monday July 3, with the outcome known before the next race in Austria – which means that any penalty that results can be applied at that time.
One of the problems Vettel faces is that last year he escaped punishment for swearing at Charlie Whiting on the radio in Mexico, and while the two incidents are different, the question of bringing the sport into disrepute through “foul play” could come up.
The governing body noted then: “The FIA will always condemn the use of offensive language in motor sport – especially when directed at officials and/or fellow participants – and expects all participants in its Championships to be respectful and mindful of the example they set for the public and the younger generation in particular.
“The FIA takes this opportunity to advise that, in the event of any future incident similar to the one that occurred in Mexico, disciplinary action will be taken by bringing such incident before the FIA International Tribunal to be judged.”
4 responses to “FIA confirms Vettel/Hamilton investigation”
I don’t expect any significant new penalties. The FiA and F1s new owners don’t want an intervention outside of a race weekend to influence this tight championship battle. It would be a PR disaster if a new penalty affected who won at the end of the season.
Vettel & Ferrari will say something to smooth the waters without admitting the hit was deliberate – ‘i meant to get up close, but misjudged it, very sorry’.
I do think something will come out about when it is appropriate to use a full safety car versus a virtual one. Lots of people thought that on Sunday that decision was influenced by what it would do for the race spectacle rather than purely safety.
They might also comment on the range of penalties available and why the 10 sec stop/go was chosen (v low speed incident, no negative effect on Lewis, 30 second net loss for Vettel).
And maybe say more about how they expect race leaders to manage pace & restarts, especially in view of temperature sensitivity of new tyres.
With you Mick.
If they have no intention of imposing further penalties, they would not open a hearing on this specific incident.
It could be a PR type hearing where changes to penalties and procedures can be recommended, but i see it as an opportunity for the FIA to step on rough driving with a lead foot.
IMHO Seb deserves to lose the points, he’s been acting like a Prima Donna for years. And in any event, disregarding his past, this one incident deserves harsher treatment. He should have been black flagged at the time of the race.
Under the new regime stewarding has sought to be as hands off as possible and that has resulted in a seemingly laissez faire approach. Certainly in the case of Vettel a harsher penalty was appropriate. Not a disqualification perhaps, but a ten second stop go was too lenient.
Equally inappropriate was their condoning of Bottas, who, not for the first time, decides to prevent Raikkonen passing him by taking them both out. “I was on the inside so I had the racing line”, he said stupidly.
Inaction of the stewards was lamentable.